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Gadgets used to be über-cool additions to a property; they were a luxury which were great to have but they never really transformed lives. Today, smart technology has moved on and 2016 was the year when it really came to the fore in our homes.

Over the past few years, the smartphone has become a game-changer in the industry. Through it, ordinary people can access cutting-edge design and innovations with one tap of a finger. There’s an app for everything these days and they can be used to save money, reduce energy usage, increase security and generally make your life easier. With smart home technology you can control your lighting, your central heating thermostat and even your home appliances – all from your smartphone.

A smarter home

With new technological advances happening every day, there’s a huge potential to home automation in many different ways. Already, it’s possible to connect all manner of devices in your house to the internet so that they can take your commands, receive and send information, and communicate. It’s called the Internet of Things (IoT) and everything from clocks, doorbells, windows and doors through to lights, window blinds, pet feeders and heating can be connected to make your home completely automated. Speakers that are activated by the sound of your voice and which connect with other devices in your home are a major new innovation in this field.

If all this sounds a bit too much like science-fiction, don’t worry! The beauty of technology is that you can choose the gadgets and digital tools that are most appropriate for you and your property.

Make technology work for you

Perhaps the most well-known smart technological devices are smart meters, which replace your old gas and electricity meters. They are being installed by energy companies in homes across the country to cut your bills and take your readings wirelessly through the mobile phone network. By 2020, the plan is that around 53 million of these meters will be fitted.

Linked with the idea of saving energy is the wide range of thermostats on the market that can be controlled remotely from your smartphone or tablet. With these, you can control the temperature of your rooms and set your heating to come on or go off according to your needs. Some of the new thermostats also monitor multiple sensors in more than one room so that the temperature of your whole property can be maintained at a specified level.

Making life easier is an important function of technology. We’re all busier than ever and it’s difficult to juggle jobs, families and housework. Any device that could save time with cleaning is sure to be a boon, so how about a small vacuuming robot that you can programme to do all the hoovering of your floors while you’re out? You can even buy versions that can mop clean the floors too!

Automated blinds have been around for many years but until recently, they were raised and lowered with a remote control device at home. With a smartphone or tablet, they can now be operated remotely from anywhere. It’s also possible to programme blinds to open and close at specific times of the day, improving your security and saving energy at the same time. Check out how our PowerView system does all this at the touch of a button.

Who knows what will be the next technological must-have for your property, but one thing’s for sure. 2017 will bring even more exciting innovations to transform your house into a smarter home.

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